Recreation

Hartwick College’s Pine Lake Environmental Campus is a private facility for the use of the Hartwick College community.

Public access is available through our Friends of Pine Lake membership program. 

Members can take advantage of all that Pine Lake has to offer – swimming, hiking, biking, muscle-powered boating, nature trails, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and more!

Become a Member

Summer
The summer rental season at the Environmental Campus begins June 1st and runs through August 10th. The trees are in full leaf, the birds are back, and day visits at the lake are at a peak.

Swimming is allowed ONLY when lifeguards are on duty during posted hours..

Rowboats, canoes and kayaks are available for use during daylight hours.

Fishing is permitted in the lake and the adjacent trout stream, the Charlotte Creek. Catch and release is encouraged for bass only. All New York State regulations apply.

Pine Lake’s trails and grounds are open sun rise to sun set for hiking and biking.

Fall

College students begin to return in Mid-August; the first students to arrive are the Awakening staff preparing for the arrival of a new first year student class. After Awakening, Pine Lake resident students arrive to move into their cabins for the year. Around the first weekend in October, the fall colors reach their peak. Red Maples, sugar maples and beech and oaks transform the woods. The hawk migration is underway, and migrating Canada geese are a daily sight.

Swimming is typically a few hours in the afternoon from mid-June through mid-August (call the office for more information 607-431-4520).  Groups can rent and reserve the swimming area for private gatherings when available with advanced reservations. 

Boats are available May 1st through October for Hartwick College students, faculty, and staff during daylight hours.

Hiking and biking continue all year; in the fall the changing leaves make a new world out of Pine Lake’s trails.

Winter

Snow! Sledding, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. Pine Lake has snowshoes to loan. The hill by the lodge is popular for sledding. Pine Lake doesn’t have skis or skates to loan; bring your own.

On the trails, look for tracks and signs of wildlife: snowshoe hare, deer, fox, bobcat, owl – predator and prey both write daily journals in the snow.

Spring

The lake thaws, and open water brings evidence of beaver activity, returning migrating geese and fisher-people. Some students are at the lake every day after class to relax and unwind with rod and reel. Frisbees, shorts and tanktops appear when the weather breaks and the ground is dry and the air warm.

The boats are set out again. Students come explore around after or during class, watching returning songbirds.

Trails are raked (with the help of volunteers) and hikers return to the summer routine.

The days get warmer as the turtles start laying eggs. Summer is coming!

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